“Please tell my story, so other women do not make the same mistake I did.”
A mom living states away made that plea after hearing my early-April radio interview discussing a lower court’s ruling that put the distribution of the abortion pill on hold. With the Supreme Court’s Friday decision that while challenges to the Food and Drug Administration’s regulations proceed, the abortion pill must remain available by mail and without the FDA’s original safety precautions, the country needs to hear her story.
I’ll call her “Jenny,” for while she wanted her story shared, she does not want her identity known. She messaged me after hearing me summarize federal Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk’s opinion — one that’s driving abortion activists crazy because the Trump appointee had dared to call unborn humans, “unborn humans.”
During the interview, I stressed that while decades of rhetoric hid the reality of abortion, the plain-talking opinion brought home the truth. The judge detailed how the abortion pill combination worked: first starving the unborn human and then causing the mother to deliver her dead baby, often at home in her toilet. Kacsmaryk continued without euphemistic gloss to shield the sensibilities of Americans, speaking of the woman who was “surprised and saddened to see that her aborted baby ‘had a head, hands, and legs’ with ‘[d]efined fingers and toes.’”
“I was struck because what you were describing happened to me,” Jenny wrote, sharing in vivid detail the events of more than two decades ago.
In Jenny’s Words
(The following is a story quoted from Jenny herself, edited lightly only for length and clarity. It contains sensitive content about the aftermath of abortion.)
I was a second-year law student, living with my then-boyfriend (now husband). I was very liberal and a good feminist influenced by second-wave feminism. I found out I was pregnant just before Christmas. I wanted to keep the baby, but I was persuaded by family and my husband that it would interfere with my ability to finish law school and future career prospects. My husband was also terrified of letting his parents down and having a baby out of wedlock, which is something his parents always warned him about when he was young.
After Christmas, I called my GYN’s office, and without seeing me or speaking to me, the doctor asked the receptionist to give me the name and phone number of an abortionist. I made an appointment with him and was told it would cost $500. I had no idea what was going on or what I was doing. I was just making the calls and showed up.
My now-husband and I showed up for the appointment, mere days before New Year’s Eve. The abortionist was very direct and to the point. He gave me a transvaginal ultrasound, pointed at the screen, and said, “Here is the pregnancy.”
He then asked me if I wanted an abortion, and I said yes. He told me to roll over on the table, and he gave me an injection in my right hip. He told me this shot would make the heart stop beating. He then wrote me a prescription and told me to get it filled, take the pills, and insert them in my vagina in a few days, and that I would have cramping like a period and some light bleeding. He then said to make an appointment for another ultrasound to make sure it was clear.
I don’t know if I was in shock or not thinking things through. But it never occurred to me that I would be expelling an actual baby in my apartment. I was not prepared for what happened. Neither was my husband. I inserted the pills on Sunday, Jan. 2, 2000. My husband’s brother played college football and they were in a bowl game that day, so we sat on the couch and watched the game.
I started having intense cramping. At one point I went to the toilet, and a baby came out. It looked exactly like the pictures of seven- to 9-week-old babies you see in photos. It was rounded. There was a black eye. My husband fished it out of the toilet and held the dead baby in his hand. I remember looking at it and wondering what it was.
But I also knew what it was. I remember going completely numb. I did not ask to hold the baby. I just stared at it. My husband looked at me, and I think he was in shock too. He put the baby in the toilet and flushed it.
I have never forgiven myself.
I went to the doctor a couple of days later and the ultrasound was clear.
The next semester of school started for both of us. We decided to get married right away. I did not want to be in the situation again of not being married and getting pregnant. We were married by the fall. I think the wedding planning and law school kept me busy and kept me from thinking about what I had done.
We now have three children, but I still cry myself to sleep thinking of that baby. Nobody prepared me for what happened that day. Nobody even told me what would happen that day. I mourn that baby. I regret what I did with everything in me.
I kept being a liberal. I kept voting for Democrats and telling people I supported abortions. But something happened when I had my daughter in 2008. I started to realize the lies that were told to me. I started to realize I was an experiment for feminism. I realized I had been used by people with an agenda.
Hearing you talk about people being unprepared for having an abortion at home really hit me. It’s true. It’s the first time I heard someone acknowledge what happened and understand how horrifying and traumatic it was.
I was lucky and didn’t have to go to the emergency room. But I also wonder what would have happened if I had needed to. I was so unprepared for what was happening, I am not sure I would have realized I needed medical attention. Everything had been so casual and nonchalant. I did not grasp the seriousness of what I was doing. If I had started bleeding, I don’t think I would have thought I needed help. This sounds crazy to me now, but this is the cognitive dissonance I was experiencing.
I never went back to the GYN who referred me to the abortionist — my sister did and had two babies delivered by her. I couldn’t stand even hearing her name when my sister mentioned her. I can’t even remember it; it’s as if my brain won’t let me think of that phone call.
On the other hand, I will never forget the abortionist. His name, his office, his matter-of-fact way of telling me what he was doing, but also his complete avoidance of telling me what was happening. I read that he died. He was also a big abortion guy. I had no idea at the time. I also didn’t realize at the time that what he did was not even approved.
I now have three children, including a teenage daughter. I have not told her what happened. She and her brothers have no idea. I don’t even mark this pregnancy on doctors’ forms. I am not even sure if there is a record anywhere that I did what I did.
The Truth About Chemical Abortion
Jenny’s shot-pill chemical abortion pre-dated the FDA’s approval of the abortion pill combination and relied on off-label uses of drugs authorized for other purposes. But both methods kill unborn humans and leave the mother to deliver her now-dead baby at home.
Since then, the FDA has approved the abortion pill combination and over the years removed many of the safeguards for women that even Jenny’s abortionist employed when using off-label drugs. No longer is an ultrasound required to ensure the pregnancy is properly dated and is not ectopic; use of the abortion pill combination when experiencing an ectopic pregnancy can be fatal for the mother. In fact, the FDA no longer requires a doctor to examine a woman or even be the one to prescribe the abortion pill. Nor is any follow-up appointment required.
The FDA also extended the approved use of the abortion pill to 10-weeks gestation. But with no ultrasound or even medical exam required, and with misdating of pregnancies common, use extends much beyond the first trimester. Thus the situation one woman recounted, as Kacsmaryk summarized in his opinion: “The abortionist misdated the baby’s gestational age as six weeks, resulting in the at-home delivery of a ‘lifeless, fully formed baby in the toilet,’ later determined to be around 30-36 weeks old.”
While litigation continues over the FDA’s approval of the abortion drug and the federal agency’s later removal of the various safeguards, women will continue to have on-demand chemical abortions. But abortion by pill-popping is still abortion, and it kills an unborn human child.
As Jenny painfully recounted, she may not have faced that fact at the time, but she did and will for the rest of her life. Now she wants you to know the truth before you make the same mistake she did. But she also wants you to know that when it comes to motherhood, you can do it — and for everyone surrounding a woman who thinks she can’t, assure her she can and help her every step of the way.
If you are facing an unplanned pregnancy and need assistance, the Women’s Care Center is the nation’s largest pregnancy and family resource center with locations throughout the United States. And if you want to support moms and growing families, please consider donating.
If you are suffering from the aftermath of an abortion, please consider one of these ministries:
Project Rachel Ministry: www.HopeAfterAbortion.org
Entering Canaan: www.enteringcanaan.com
Sisters of Life Hope and Healing Mission: https://sistersoflife.org/healing-after-abortion/
Save One: https://saveone.org/
Surrendering the Secret: https://surrenderingthesecret.com/